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Stephen O. Andersen
Stephen Oliver Andersen (born 17 January 1948) is the American Director of Research at the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development (IGSD) and former co-chair (1989-2012) of the Montreal Protocol Technology and Economic Assessment Panel (TEAP). He is considered one of the founders and leading figures in the success of the Montreal Protocol that has phased out the chemicals that deplete the stratospheric ozone that protects the Earth against the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation that causes skin cancer, cataracts, and suppression of the human immune system, and destroys agricultural crops and natural ecosystems. Because ozone-depleting chemicals are also powerful greenhouse gases the Montreal Protocol also protected climate.
Andersen was born in Logan, Utah, United States, the child of a professor of horticulture and a botanist. He studied business administration for two years at Utah State University and then transferred in 1969 to the University of California, Berkeley where he earned B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Agricultural and Natural Resources Economics. His PhD dissertation at UC Berkeley was supervised by Drs. Siegfried von Ciriacy-Wantrup who was among the first to describe the importance to sustainability of common property, conservation, land use planning, endangered species and biodiversity and pioneered the Precautionary Principle and the "Safe Minimum Standard" the threshold below which loss in sustainability is catastrophic and irreversible.
While a graduate student he was a member of the U.S. Department of Transportation "Climatic Impact Assessment Program" (CIAP) assessing the environmental and economic impacts of the decline in northern latitude grain production predicted as a consequence of climate change and depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer.
Andersen began his professional career in 1974 at the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund (now Earthjustice), where he provided litigation support for cases including energy conservation, forestry, mining, national parks and marine mammal protection. In 1976 he joined the Environmental Law Institute as their first economist working on a series of five books on energy conservation and later on a study with Lisle Baker (Suffolk University Law School) on the Vermont Land Gains Tax (1981).
Stephen O. Andersen and Madhava Sarma meeting with the Pope John Paul II in Rome in November 2002
In 1986, Andersen joined the fledgling U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) team that built the scientific, technical and economic case for protecting the stratospheric ozone layer. At EPA he rose to Deputy Director for Stratospheric Ozone Protection and then transferred to the Climate Protection Partnerships Division, where he was Director of Strategic Climate Projects until his retirement from government in 2009.
The timing of Andersen's arrival at EPA was fortuitous. 1987 proved to be a watershed moment in the effort to stop ozone depletion, which increased risks of skin cancer and threatened to wipe out crops and ecosystems, among many adverse impacts. The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was agreed on 16 September 1987 and created a timetable to phase out and eliminate the production of ozone depleting substances.
At EPA, Andersen's responsibilities included analysis of regulatory impact, cost, and trade, technology co-operation, and sector projects in halons, foams, mobile air conditioning, and military uses. Over his tenure he pioneered EPA's voluntary approaches to ozone layer protection including the phase-out of chlorofluorocarbon(CFC) in the manufacturing of food packaging, the recycling of CFC from vehicle air conditioning, the halt to testing and training with halon, and the accelerated CFC solvent phase-out in electronics manufacturing. Andersen also brought Soviet authorities together with NASA scientists and EPA senior managers to gain agreement for US Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) be carried to space on a Soviet Meteor-3 satellite(1994) rocket in order to overcome loss of access to space (resulting from the Space Shuttle Challenger accident); he founded and managed the first EPA international awards, the U.S. EPA Stratospheric Protection Awards and Climate Protection Awards; and was EPA Liaison to the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) on stratospheric ozone and climate, chairing several DoD committees on solvent validation, aircraft maintenance, manufacturing rockets without ozone-depleting substances, and certifying the Joint Strike Fighter for particulate emissions.
Whilst at EPA Andersen co-Chaired the 1989 Economic Assessment Panel, the 1989-1997 Solvents Coatings and Adhesives Technical Options Committee, the 1992 Methyl Bromide Assessment and since 1989 co-founded and co-chaired the Technology and Economic Assessment Panel (TEAP).
Over the decades, the Montreal Protocol became a victim of its own success. By 2006, some called for dismantling the treaty, claiming it had achieved its goals and outlived its usefulness. Andersen knew the Protocol needed to be not only preserved but strengthened. In 2007 Andersen assembled a team of scientists, led by Dutch scientist Dr. Guus Velders, to research the role of the Protocol in climate protection. In 2007 Andersen and the Velders' team published "The Importance of the Montreal Protocol in Protecting Climate." The team quantified the benefits of the Montreal Protocol, and found that it helped prevent 11 billion metric tons of CO2equivalent emissions per year from 1990 to 2010, having delayed the impacts of climate change by 7 - 12 years. The paper determined the Montreal Protocol had been the most successful climate agreement in history, it also estimated the joint ozone and climate benefits of an accelerated hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFC) phaseout, providing policymakers with information needed to accelerate the phaseout.
In 2009, Andersen retired from the EPA and joined Durwood Zaelke at the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development (IGSD) as director of research, where he has continued in his pursuit of ozone and climate protection. In 2009, Andersen and the Velders' team published their second paper "The Large Contribution of Projected HFC Emissions to Future Climate Forcing", which used future HFC production and consumption scenarios to show that without new controls, HFC emissions lead to substantial climate warming by the middle of the 21st century. The two Velders papers helped build the foundation that inspired other scientists to calculate and communicate the interlinkages of ozone with climate and the importance of phasing out ODSs and phasing-down HFCs.
Andersen's research and work at IGSD, and over his career, culminated on 15 October 2016 when the Parties to the Montreal Protocol agreed to the Kigali Amendment, an amendment to the Protocol for the inclusion and regulation of HFCs. The Kigali Amendment will limit warming from HFCs to 0.06 °C, avoiding nearly 0.5 °C of warming by 2100 and 80 Gt CO2e by 2050.
To date Andersen now concentrates on achieving the HFC phasedown as quickly as feasible with higher energy efficiency at affordable prices. He is also part of the team using government procurement to purchase super-efficient room ACs at an affordable price around the world, and of the team demonstrating secondary-loop motor vehicle air conditioning.
Stephen is featured in the PBS Documentary "Saving the Ozone Layer: How We Saved the Planet" along with scientists Sherwood Rowland and Mario Molina, politicians Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, scientists Paul Newman and Mack McFarland and NGO Presidents David Doniger and Durwood Zaelke, aired 10 April 2019.
2017 United Nations Environment Policy and Implementation Leadership Award - "For Lifetime Contributions as an Architect and Implementer of the Montreal Protocol."
2017 United Nations Environment 2017 Scientific Leadership Team Award - "For Building and Communicating the Scientific Foundation for the 2007 acceleration of the HCFC Phaseout and the 2016 Kigali Amendment and Decision to phase down HFCs and increase energy efficiency." (Earned with John S. Daniel, David W. Fahey, Marco Gonzalez, Mack McFarland, Guus J.M. Velders, and Durwood Zaelke).
2012 US Environmental Protection Agency Level III Scientific and Technological Achievement Award - "For a Substantial Revision of a Scientific Procedure for Assessing Ozone and Trifluoroacetic Impacts of Refrigerants."
2008 Service to America Career Achievement Medal - "For Over 35 Years of Public Service for the Environment."
2007 Nobel Peace Prize - Awarded to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and former US Vice President Albert Gore, Jr [Stephen O. Andersen served as Special Report co-chair].
2007 United Nations Environment Programme Best New Scientific Publication 20thAnniversary of the Montreal Protocol - "For the Importance of the Montreal Protocol in Protecting Climate", published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Earned with Guus J. M. Velders, John S. Daniel, David W. Fahey and Mack McFarland).
2007 US Environmental Protection Agency Stratospheric Protection Award - "For Climate Co-Benefits of the Montreal Protocol Science Team."
2007 United Nations Environmental Programme Montreal Protocol Visionaries Award - "For His Tireless Energies Over 20 Years for Ozone Layer Protection."
2007 United Nations Environmental Programme Technology and Economic Assessment Panel Champion Award - "For Leadership and Prolific Efforts Around the Globe to Achieve an Early Phase-Out of Ozone-Depleting Substances."
Andersen, Stephen O., Nancy J. Sherman, Suely Carvalho, and Marco Gonzalez (2018). "The Global Search and Commercialization of Alternatives and Substitutes for Ozone-Depleting Substances", Geoscience. doi:10.1016/j.crte.2018.07.010.
Montzka, Stephen A.; McFarland, Mack; Andersen, Stephen O.; Miller, Benjamin R.; Fahey, David W; Hall, Bradley D.; Hu, Lei; Carolina, Siso; Elkins, James W. (2014). "Recent Trends in Global Emissions of Hydrochlorofluorocarbons and Hydrofluorocarbons--Reflecting on the 2007 Adjustment to the Montreal Protocol". Journal of Physical Chemistry. 119 (19): 4439-4449. doi:10.1021/jp5097376. PMID25405363.
Zaelke, Durwood; Andersen, Stephen O.; Borgford-Parnell, Nathan (2012). "Strengthening Ambition for Climate Mitigation: The Role of the Montreal Protocol in Reducing Short-lived Climate Pollutants". Review of European Community & International Environmental Law. 21 (3): 231-242. doi:10.1111/reel.12010.
Luecken, Deborah J.; Waterland, Robert L.; Papasavva, Stella; Taddonio, Kristen N.; Hutzell, William T.; Rugh, John P.; Andersen, Stephen O. (2010). "Ozone and TFA Impacts in North America from Degradation of 2,3,3,3-Tetrafluoropropene (HFO-1234yf), A Potential Greenhouse Gas Replacement". Environ. Sci. Technol. 44 (1): 343-348. doi:10.1021/es902481f. PMID19994849.
Andersen, Stephen O., Guus J.M. Velders and Penelope Canan (2009). "How Science Guides Industry Choice of Alternatives to Ozone-Depleting Substances," Twenty Years of Ozone Decline: Proceedings of the Symposium for the 20th Anniversary of the Montreal Protocol, Springer Science.
Andersen, Stephen O., K. Madhava Sarma and Kristen N. Taddonio, "Technology Transfer for the Ozone Layer: Lessons for Climate Change," Earthscan Press, London 2007 (Official publication of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the United Nations Environment Programme).